Skip to main content

Pakistan quake death toll rises to 356

From Sophia Saifi, for CNN
September 26, 2013 -- Updated 1411 GMT (2211 HKT)
A girl walks past the remnants of a house in the earthquake-devastated district of Awaran on Thursday, September 26. The 7.7-magnitude quake struck on September 24 in a remote, sparsely populated area of southwestern Pakistan. A girl walks past the remnants of a house in the earthquake-devastated district of Awaran on Thursday, September 26. The 7.7-magnitude quake struck on September 24 in a remote, sparsely populated area of southwestern Pakistan.
HIDE CAPTION
7.7 quake rocks Pakistan
7.7 quake rocks Pakistan
7.7 quake rocks Pakistan
7.7 quake rocks Pakistan
7.7 quake rocks Pakistan
7.7 quake rocks Pakistan
7.7 quake rocks Pakistan
7.7 quake rocks Pakistan
7.7 quake rocks Pakistan
7.7 quake rocks Pakistan
7.7 quake rocks Pakistan
7.7 quake rocks Pakistan
7.7 quake rocks Pakistan
7.7 quake rocks Pakistan
7.7 quake rocks Pakistan
7.7 quake rocks Pakistan
7.7 quake rocks Pakistan
7.7 quake rocks Pakistan
<<
<
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17
18
>
>>
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Two rockets are fired at a military helicopter taking officials to the quake zone
  • More than 600 people have been injured by the powerful quake, a local official says
  • Survivors are having to cope with high temperatures and a lack of drinking water
  • Authorities say about 21,000 houses have been destroyed

Islamabad, Pakistan (CNN) -- The death toll from the strong earthquake that struck southwestern Pakistan this week has risen to 356 as rescue workers struggle to reach victims, authorities said Thursday.

Further complicating relief efforts, two rockets were fired at -- and missed -- a military helicopter on its way to the quake zone.

The number of people injured has climbed to 619, said Jan Muhammad Buledi, a spokesman for the government of Balochistan, the province where the quake hit. Authorities estimate that 21,000 houses have been destroyed.

The 7.7-magnitude earthquake took place Tuesday in a remote, sparsely populated area of Balochistan. Rescue efforts are under way in the heavily hit districts of Awaran and Kech.

Hundreds killed in Pakistan earthquake
Did quake cause island to appear?

Images from the scene have shown buildings reduced to rubble. More people are feared to be trapped under the wreckage, authorities say, suggesting the death toll could rise.

The remoteness of the affected area and damaged communications networks are hindering the rescue operation.

Officials say some areas remain inaccessible, preventing them from getting a full picture of the scale of the damage.

Meanwhile, thousands of survivors in need of assistance after the quake are having to cope with high temperatures, a lack of drinking water and little in the way of shelter.

October is the hottest month in Balochistan and the region is in a perpetual state of drought, said Muhammad Hanif, the director of the National Weather Forecasting Center. Temperatures in Awaran and Kech have reached 37 degrees Celsius (99 degrees Fahrenheit).

Helicopter attacked

The Pakistani military has deployed more than 1,000 troops to help with rescue and relief efforts

The troops are entering a difficult region. Militants fighting for a separate state in Balochistan operate out of part of Awaran district, which has been the site of bombings.

The potential threat was underlined Thursday when two rockets were fired at an army helicopter ferrying the chairman of the National Disaster Management Authority to the earthquake zone, a military official said.

The rockets missed the helicopter as it flew over the narrow Mashki Valley on its way to Awaran, said Brig. Muhammad Abdur Raheem, an army spokesman in Balochistan.

The helicopter was carrying Maj. Gen. Muhammad Saeed Aleem, the National Disaster Management Authority chairman, as well as staff officers and two members of the local news media, Raheem said. All those who were aboard are safe, he added.

There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the failed attack.

Pakistani officials have said the quake was powerful enough to cause the appearance of a small mud island a few kilometers off the country's coast in the Arabian Sea. But some overseas scientists have questioned whether the island was the direct result of the earthquake.

Measuring the magnitude of earthquakes

CNN's Saima Mohsin in Islamabad contributed to this report.

ADVERTISEMENT
Part of complete coverage on
September 17, 2014 -- Updated 1239 GMT (2039 HKT)
Sean Connery says "yes," whilst David Beckham says "no." See what the famous are saying about Scotland's referendum.
September 17, 2014 -- Updated 1710 GMT (0110 HKT)
On September 18, Scots go to the polls to vote on the future of their country. Here's what you should know.
September 17, 2014 -- Updated 1720 GMT (0120 HKT)
This is "Flames of War," a slick and ominous new video from the ISIS media center.
September 16, 2014 -- Updated 1903 GMT (0303 HKT)
For years, Morten Storm moved between two worlds. A radical Islamist turned double agent is lifting the lid on some of the world's best-kept secrets.
September 17, 2014 -- Updated 0038 GMT (0838 HKT)
A man abducted alongside killed U.S. journalist Steven Sotloff tells CNN that no one from the U.S. government has tried to talk with him.
September 17, 2014 -- Updated 1508 GMT (2308 HKT)
Mulatu Astatke is the founding father of ethio-jazz: a fusion of Ethiopian music with western jazz.
September 17, 2014 -- Updated 1311 GMT (2111 HKT)
Have you been to these? The global museum list, released Tuesday, ranks 25 of the world's best museums.
September 17, 2014 -- Updated 1703 GMT (0103 HKT)
iOS 8, the latest version of Apple's mobile operating system, comes with new features that you'll enjoy.
September 16, 2014 -- Updated 1253 GMT (2053 HKT)
The Ebola virus, very deadly and currently without a cure, is fast-spreading throughout the small West African country.
September 17, 2014 -- Updated 1213 GMT (2013 HKT)
It's a surfer's paradise -- but Diah Rahayu is out on her own when it comes to professional women's wave-riding in Bali.
September 17, 2014 -- Updated 1004 GMT (1804 HKT)
Each day, CNN brings you an image capturing a moment to remember, defining the present in our changing world.
Browse through images from CNN teams around the world that you don't always see on news reports.
ADVERTISEMENT